From the Desk of Russell FreitasFirebaugh-Las Deltas Unified School District (FLDUSD) enrolls approximately 2,400 students from Preschool through 12th Grade. All school sites of the district are located within the city of Firebaugh, and the schools are as follows: Hazel M. Bailey Primary (Preschool-2); Arthur E. Mills Intermediate (3-5); Firebaugh Middle School (6-8); Firebaugh High School (9-12); El Puente Continuation High School (9-12); Community Day School; Adult Education.
We are on a journey of change in California and in Firebaugh. The most exciting part of our journey is the transition to the Common Core State Standards. We have transitioned to full implementation of the Common Core in grades K-12, and these new content standards provide a practical way to prepare our students for the challenges of our forever changing world. Our goal is to prepare our students to be college and career ready as they finish their high school journey. We want our students to be able to work collaboratively, to think critically, to be creative problem-solvers, and effectively utilize technology as a learning and communication tool.
FLDUSD with the help of a grant awarded from First Five has started a Birth to third grade literacy initiative ensuring all students are reading at grade level by third grade. Our district is committed to establish quality preschool opportunities for all 3 and 4 year olds in our community. We have added additional Physical Education teachers for our K-5 sites enhancing our K-12 PE program. Students are actively participating in structured PE activities while grade level teachers are given additional time to plan. We continue to enhance our Response To Intervention(RTI) opportunities at all sites with hiring additional certificated Tutors. We are proudly in our third year of reviving music in the district with the support of our school board and the help of two separate VH1 Save the Music grants. We have installed two keyboard labs to establish music from second grade through high school and hired our third music teacher. Visual and performing arts are essential to student learning and the stimulation of creativity. We continue to enhance our Agriculture offerings and continue to bolster our award-winning Agriculture program, nearly 85% of our high school students are members of Future Farmer of America. Additionally, we have improved technology resources for staff and students. We have purchased additional technology carts for students and teachers to utilize computer or hand-held devices in K-12 classrooms. We want our students and our staff to engage in exciting, new ways of teaching and learning. The new Smarter Balanced assessment will be a computerized assessment so there is an evident need for students to familiarize themselves with technology prior to taking the assessments.
Finally, a top priority of our district is always safety. Our schools will continue to enhance efforts to ensure that campuses and classrooms are safe and clean for students. In collaboration with the Firebaugh Police Department, we have established safety walks at all of our school sites to continuously look at ways for making our campuses as safe as possible. One result of ongoing safety analyses on our campuses was the installation of cameras at all sites. We want to improve and build a school culture that is supportive, respectful, drug-free, and conducive to successful student learning.
FLDUSD will continue to reach for excellence in all academic and extracurricular areas. Parents, I encourage you to get involved and engaged in your child’s learning. Parent involvement includes, but is not limited to, any school sponsored workshops, events, and activities. Our purpose is to create a community for learning, where students, parents, and staff are joined in the pursuit of academic excellence and personal growth.